tv Tonight From Washington CSPAN November 26, 2012 8:30pm-11:00pm EST
>> guest: they really stepped up for the first time as communications infrastructure players, and not just cable operators. comcast and others made access available points free, a huge advantage for people who otherwise didn't have connection. there was a a bunch of announcements if your home was washed away in a flood, you
didn't have to return the box. there was embarrassing incidents where after tornadoes, the cable company fine them $400 for box destroyed in tornado. they are getting better about that. you know, they ought to be commended for that. i think verizon has to be acknowledge for having the major carriers doing the best job, but look at why they were successful and how they were successful and then say, you know, all of that stuff you did that was successful, we have to make that a standard, make that, if not an enforced standard, at least spread nej out there so -- knowledge out there so everyone can perform as well the next time. >> host: back to what you wrote on your blog about private industry taking over the infrastructure and having control of the infrastructure. recently, a couple years ago, the companies succeeded in not having to put up backup battery power on their cell towers, something you wrote about. >> guest: right. >> host: if you would, more on
this private-public partnership. >> guest: yeah, and this is where, you know, we need to move away from the idea that, well, this is not like the old bell system. these are private networks, but with private capital, and, therefore, there can be no regulation or standards. we're all dependent on this stuff now. no matter what private company you are, you know, you still, if you're wal-mart, you have to put fire exits in and a fire sus presentation system in. that's not a violation you built the store with private capital, but there needs to be basic public safety rules. the networks are now providing critical service in an emergency. this is exactly the time when you need to be connected, and ten years ago or five years ago in the wake of katrina, it was possible to say, well, look, you know, the networks are young. these guys are investing. they got the right incentives to
make it reliable, and for the industry to say, no regulation, no standards or enforcement, you know, we're past that. there's a point in which you have to bite the bullet and say, look, guys, we're all about, doing a great job or not a great job, but too many people are dependent on you to let this just be private sector decision making. we at least have to know how reliable networks are, we have to plan, and, frankly, in an emergency, it is really everyone's benefit to have some of the rules in place. i know that everybody focuses on cost, and that's right. you know, this is one of the criticism that the blog post came from a friend of mine from cato saying, yeah, everyone wants cheap phones until there's an emergency, and then where's the backup power? that costs money. there's a decision you make about the tradeoffs. there's good things about the current-private structure, multiple networks so if comcast
goes down, verizon can pick up the slack. there was a roaming agreement sharing the infrastructure in a critical moment. there's a lot of good stuff going on in the private sector, but we have to acknowledge the role of the federal government and the state government in making sure that in the crisis and lead up to the crisis we're ready, and that in the crisis itself, everybody knows what to do, and the pieces workht smoothly. >> host: finally, the fcc announced there's field hearings on sandy and telecommunications. >> guest: yes. i think the public notice issued struck the right tone and asked all the right questions. it is an opportunity to take a look at our world which has networks in many locations. we have to remember that in a lot of rural areas, you have one network, not four or five networks. there's a whrot of opportunities here. there's a lot of good work going on, but at the same time, there's also a lot of liability
and concern rm -- concern. a lot of people's lives are dependent on this. this is not a luxury anymore, and, particularly, we're shifting emergency response stuff over from television and radio. we're now including texting in that and internet messages and if we're going to build a future on powerful networks that are capable of doing so much more than the old networks, we have to acknowledge that, you know, the time has come to have some basic principles in place, some basic safeguards so that when the prices hit, people know what to do and they are able to do it. >> host: herald feld, this is "the communicators" on c-span, and up next, representative engle. a member of the internet commerce committee and wrote a letter to the chairman of the
commerce committee hoping to hold hearings on telecommunications with sandy. what's the goal with the hearings? >> guest: well, you know, my district as most districts in new york were disrupted by hurricane sandy, and looking at the disruption, it's clear services were one of the key services that failed to perform, and so we want to have a hearing just to find out way went wrong and what to do in the future so it doesn't happen again. the fcc reported o quarter of the cell towers were knocked out in a area of ten states, and people lost wireless, television, telephone, and internet services putting lives at risk, and it's clear that there either was not correct preparation or we were caught by
surprise. this is not something we want to happen again. the purpose of the hearing would not be to point any fingers. it would be to find out what happenedw3 and how congress gets involved so it doesn't happen again. i'm sure storms like sandy are becoming more and more common place, unfortunately, and we don't want a repetition of what happened in the northeast. >> host: we heard from the wireless industry earlier that they were relatively pleased with how their networks operated and how the wireless services continued during sandy. >> caller: well, i would like to hear from them, and i think that's why a hearing would be so important. again, this is not to point fingers at anybody. obviously, the telecommunications industry was knee deep in this literally, and they can, perhaps, enlighten us
on what went right and wrong. obviously, it was not all hunky dory. many people lost power. is that something that could not be prevented? is it something that if we change certain things might be prevented in the future? you know, last summer a storm knockedded out 9-1-1 on the east coast. it's becoming more and more common place. a hearing would allow us to invest gait the reliability of the networks and identify and highlight best practices, and when necessary, address as a -- vulnerabilities in the infrastructure. i want to hear what the telecommunications industry has to say, and they can help enlighten congress as to what we should be doing to prevent this from happening in the future. >> host: representative engel, have you heard back from chairman upton? >> caller: we have not, but
the letter was just recently sent out to chairman upton and the chairman of the subcommittee. this hearing, this proposed hearing is, again, not to be at adversary yal in any way, shape, or form. it should be bipartisan. we want to find out what happened, and i don't think there's anyone who would not want to do that. in fact, i want to take it further and see a separate hearing to look at the utilities, the performance of the utility companies, not just telecommunication, but the utilities. we know there were/÷ problems. again, the point is not to finger point, but see what we can do to ensure that this does not happen again. ghs now, will you be attending any of the fcc field hearings held? the fcc just announced those. >> caller: well, i certainly would like to or have staff attend. it's important that we get --
[inaudible] it was a perfect storm, the storm of the century, but with climate change and everything that seems to be happening, we are getting more and more of the storms, and it's becoming more and more common. i think that anything we can do to get to the bottom of it, and, again, not just to find out what happened, but use when we find out what happened to make sure it doesn't happen again and ensure we can prevent these tragedies from happening because, again, it's not just an inconvenience for people. it's dangerous. if someone does not have access to 9-1-1 # facilities, if someone can't contact anybody, obviously, this is putting people in grave danger, and so we need to make sure this does not happen again. >> host: on a personal level, did you lose your service? >> caller: no, i did not. i did to the lose it, and i personally didn't lose power
either, but many people in my constituency did. many people did not have cell service for well over a week did not have cable and wireless for over a week and many people were in the dark, had no power for two weeks and more, and so it was really very difficult time, and we had destruction, of course, my district with destruction, other districts impacted even more heavily than mine, but mine was impactedded, and in people suffered as a result. >> host: representative elliot engel, joining us here on "the communicators," thank you, sir. >> caller: thank you, my pleasure.
on 16 or 17 bases, we have military run school. the average cost to educate a child in that school per year is $50,000. almost four times what the rest of the public education costs. the vast majority of the bases we use public schools. we could take the money we spend today, pay every public school system $14,000 per child and save billions of dollars per year just -- and with the same or better outcomes. this weekend, you can talk with oklahoma senator tom coburn about the fiscal cliff, affordable care act, and the future of the republican party on senator wrote several books and reports like "the debt bomb," and join our three hour conversation with calls, e-mails, tweets, and facebook comments for senator tom coburn for booktv's "in-depth" on
c-span2. next, john roberts on challenges and surprises he had on the high court. last month, he spoke for an hour with students about the supreme court and constitutional law. [applause] >> thank you very much. thank you, and thank you, david, for that gracious introduction, and all of you for a very, very warm welcome. this is my first visit to rice, and i'm already glad that i came. president lee told you i can't talk about anything current, future, or past. [laughter] my remarks will be brief. [laughter] i had the pleasure of knowing david for 35 years.
as he mentioned, he was the president back then too of the harvard law review. he's used to holding the reigns of power. a chief justice also holds the reigns of power. the only difference is that a chief justice has to hold them lightly, less he discover they are not attached to anything. [laughter] perhaps a faculty feels the same way about a university president. [laughter] nevertheless, i know from long and personal experience that david brings to light a special vision, talent, and leadership. this school is fortunate to have him at the helm, and i know he feels blessed to be there. i'm especially pleased that david invited me to visit rice as part of the centennial celebration of the university's founding, and i extend my sincere congratulations to the faculty and students and alumni on your first great century. the founding of a new university
is always a historic occasion, but this for rice was truly extraordinary. the papers reported that the distinguished first president of rice invited 150 renowned scholars from around the world to attend the three-day founding celebration. they dawned robs and marched to the ceremony to the accompaniment of a band. president lovitt himself prepared and orally delivered an epic essay on his vision for the new institution. that essay was 85 pages in print. there's no need to panic or -- [laughter] head for the exits. i do not intend to emulate the president in that respect. the newspapers reporting that
the former invocation started november 12th timed to coincide with the anniversary of columbus' arrival in the americas. he aimed very high in the vision for the new school. the president, though, is not the first speaker. after an opening prayer, a princeton professor, henry van dyke, recited a lengthy poem call "texas: a democratic ode" that he wrote for the ceremony. this invoked images of wild bees, distant stars, and frontier pioneers. the dallas morning news reported that the audience listened to the poet's words, quote, "with the strictist attention with applause." now, the next speaker, the chief justice of texas spoke in prose. his review was nowhere near as good as the poet received. [laughter] now, in light of that, i thought
the best course would be for me to compos a poem for this occasion. [laughter] again, there's no need to panic or run for the exits. i gave up that plan when i couldn't find suitable words that rimed with latin terms. [laughter] president lovitt spoke third and delivered the speech titled "the meaning of the new stietion." his essay is, in fact, a truly magnificent scholarly work with a thoughtful and prophetic vision on what the institution would become. i want to focus on one point he made observing a great challenge on any institution is, quote, to plan at one and the same time for the immediate future and for the next 100 years. now at the century mark, it's safe to say that president lovitt and six presidents who followed him met the challenge.
like the academic programs ranging from space, science, and technology to the baker institute for public policy, marred by both relevant and durability and look at the graduates, rode scholars, astronaut, and a best selling author. the diversity is amazing. rice excelled in ways that could not have been guessed. i'm talking about rice's famous come from behind victory over heavily favored colorado in the 1938 cotton bowl. [applause] it is at least famous in the halls of the supreme court because until then, unbeaten colorado was led by future supreme court justice byron white. he threw a touchdown pass, scored on an interception, and
kicked two extra points prevailing 28-14. not been the president could afford seeing that. now,fn when president spoke a hundred years ago, the newspapers in this state and around the nation took due note something big was happening in texas. the new york times reported that the president attracted an array of learning such as has seldom been assembled in the united states. the dallas morning news laughed mystically observing the president's speech coincided with the early evening appearance of both jupiter and venus and suggested that the evening sky was an august ri of a bright future for the institute. not every newspaper was as perceptive. one local journal reported the finding in the same column as the news that con go, the world's largest circus elephant was coming to town.
[laughter] we now know 1100 -- 100 years later those who bet on the greatness are ripe. i'll keep remarks shorter so i'd like to close with a personal word of congratulations to the president on having the privilege to serve at rice in the centennial, and i'm delighted to have the opportunity to call him president once again. now, any of you who have been to the supreme court know the justices on that court are used to asking lawyers a lot of questions. today, we're going to turn the ables a little bit, and we're going to have a lawyer ask me a lot of questions. thanks very much. [applause] >> thank you so much, mr. chief justice. before i begin, we have people from all parts of our community,
but we have a lot of students here today, and among the students, of course, are quite a number thinking about going to law school. yet, what they read about is a decline in reputation of law schools, maybe even a decline in the reputation of lawyers, although, that's hard to imagine -- [laughter] questionsd"nd about job prospecs after law school, and i thought we would take this opportunity to hear your thoughts and reflections and maybe advice to push our students and others who are thinking about going to law school and what the opportunities are. >> it's an obvious answer, but you have to ask yourself why do you want to go to law school? i think there's a lot of people who go to law school because
they're not good at math and can't think of anything else to do. [laughter] they often turn out to be very disappointed lawyers. i suppose the better way to put the question is not so much why you want to go to law school, but why do you want to be a lawyer? you want to do serious soul searching about that because it's also a difficult profession, but, particularly, these days. if you want to go to serve your community, perhaps as a prosecutor, for example, that's a good reason. there's something gratifying about being able to stand up in court and say you speak for your country. same is true on the other side. maybe you feel motivated to represent rights of people accused, that's another good reason. when they announced the case in court, the bailiff says this is so and so, people versus smith, and the district attorney says i'm so and so, i speak for the
people. i have a friend, and when the prosecutor does that, it's his turn, and he says i'm so and so, and i also speak for the people, just one at a time. [laughter] perhaps you want to go to law school because you have a particular policy area you're interested in, do what you can to promote environmental protection and think that working through the law is the best way to do that. you have to have a reason. there are better things to do if you can't think of something to do other than embark on a particular career path. >> thank you. i want to now turn to the court for a moment and a little on public perception, the only -- we read about the court and decisions on the court, and the common description is conservatives on the court and liberal on the court, and it's
not the public's perception, but the media perception. is there a different way you'd like people to think about the court and justices on the courts than those categories? >> well, sure. i don't think it's a very accurate way to view the court. it's importing from the political branches categories that don't fit in the non-prelim branch. you can't identify a liberal or conservative view. we have a very difficult bankruptcy tax case. nobody can say, well, you're a liberal if you want to allow the deduction by the estates which are conservative if you require the debtor, and just does not make sense. on ones more access l to the public regimely, it's hard to pick categories. there was a case involving a question of whether or not certain discrimination laws should be applied to religious institutions so you could
challenge the hiring or firing of a minister on the grounds it was discriminatory. what's the liberal position in that? the view you should extend crimination laws or protect the free exercise of the religion to the greatest extent possible? we look at the cases and resolve them to our best view of the law, not in terms of a particular liberal or conservative political agenda. there's ways of characterizes this that makes sense in terms of the work we do. some of the colleagues refer to it here strictly to the text of the stay chute. others of the colleagues like to look expansively to what we call the legislative history, the background of the statute, or its purpose. it maybes sense to refer to them in those terms. some of us think it's very important what the framers of the constitution were thinking about at the founding when they drafted it. others on the court take a flexible view thinking the
interpretation of the constitution should be informedded by evolutionary developments. those things make sense. it's easier, i think, for reporters to say that justice is liberal and that justice is conservative, and i don't think it's a helpful way to look at what we do. >> let me switch from there to a question about a little more internally in a sense. i think you've expressed the desire to have a unified court that feels as a whole rather than individual justices with the desire to have fewer five four decisions and fewer dissents. if you look at a five four decision against the war in court, that's a steady increase where the number of di sents remains stable over that time.
i think at 18%. do you think those are good metrics for the court? how would you like to see more kind of cohesion among the court or have you come to a somewhat different view about those things? >> no. i mean, the first thing you have to do is get a good sense of the statistics because i think most of the cases people who follow the court in a serious way. you think about are the sharply divided five four cases that get a lot of political tension. most cases are unanimous. this year is 44%, this year, pretty much around that same number. if you take cases 9-0, that is two-thirds of the cases. in other words, we have fairly broad agreement on two-thirds of the cases, and even the five-four ones are not always as
controversial as you think. among the decisions last year was one asking when you overstate the basis on a sale of a capital asset, thereby reducing the amount of income is your criminal prosecution a six year statute of limitations? that was a knock down, drag out fight. [laughter] leading to a five-four decision. sometimes it doesn't have to do with political perceptions. the broader agreement on the court, the better. the man in the street is just naturally going to say, well, the court was 9-0. that's probably right. court is 5-4, well, you know, there must have been reasons the other way. to the extent we have broader groament is better. the way you get to broader agreement is to have a narrower discussion. if you say the basis for
decision is going to be a narrow ground, people can agree on that. if it's broader, affecting more future cases, people say, well, i can't go that far so i'm going to write separately. i happen to think that's a good thing that our decisions reaches narrowly as possible rather than justices covering all situations they might not have anticipated or thought about carefully or not. i said it earlier, and, frankly, i got a lot of criticism to say it was an adventure moving to more consensus on the court. it's worth working towards. sometimes it's it can't be achieved. you know, if one justice thinks a particular practice violations the fourth amendment and another justice thinks it doesn't, they can't meet in the middle saying it kind of violates the fourth
amendment. i'm not talking about anybody yielding on a matter of principle. the effort to reach the agreement which you can achieve in more cases by focusing on a narrower ground of decision is a worthwhile objective. >> that leads to another question. the supreme court's a very exclusive club, but it does not pick its own members, and we have, of course, a con confirman process are there things you have been to, justice of the united states for awhile, you kind of wish were a bigger factor in the election, different questions senators were asked or other qualities they should focus on in the confirmation hearings that they don't now focus on in the hearings? >> right, although, i thought the confirmation hearing worked out well in the end -- [laughter] it is not a very edifying process.
i mean, the formula is very well established. senators ask questions about current hot topics they want to lay out a position op. they know the nominee can want properly answer the question.( the no , ma'am see -- no , ma'am -- no , nominee says i can't answe, and they say i still can't answer that question, and then the senator's time runs out, and another senator does the same thing. [laughter] it is not useful in any way, and other than to allow the senators to convey their views on a particular issue, that's not what it was intended to do.ú now, it's presumptuous of me, but it's more useful to ask a question the nominee can answer. along the lines say, you know, what is your view of the role of the supreme court under the constitution?
people have different views, and i have a view. i think it's right, but other people have different views, and they are wrong, but -- [laughter] no, my point is you can learn a lot about a nominee, not right or wrong, but, i mean, not that you vote against him if he adopts the wrong view, but about what they say about the role of the court. tell them, you know, you're swrb -- somebody from a foreign country comes and says what does the supreme court do? a nominee ought to be able to give a fairly nuanced, but at the same time, a deep answer that reflects an understanding of the importance of the court in the system of the separation of powers. that will tell you something about that nominee. it may tell you something that encourages you to vote for him or against him. those sorts of questions. ask your nominee, well, what's, you know, what book have you read growing up that made you
want to be a lawyer or made you want to be a judge? you learn something if the perp sits there in a blanket question. you learn something else if they say, you know, to kill a mocking bird or 12 angry men or something else. you can learn about judicial philosophy and perspective on the law by asking questions like that. i think it could be made a more useful process, but i don't hold out great hope. [laughter] >> i'll turn it back and take one of those questions. was there a book or an experience -- [laughter] when you were growing up that made you want to be a lawyer or a judge? >> i saw the movie "12 angry men," watched it just a little bit ago, again, with my young chirp. i think it's extraordinarily inspirational telling you a lot about american justice and the values of the liberation, the role of nonlawyers, nonjudges,
common people looking at carrying out an obligation they have, a civic obligation, and it's inspirational. i can't say from that moment on i wanted to be a lawyer or judge, but i do remember the impact on me, and i wanted to make sure my children had the same experience so there's hundreds of other things people could talk about that would give an inquiring senator some sense about what they thought about the loss. >> if i can take the other question you suggested, such a short answer to it, and forgive me because most of the audience here are not lawyers or judges, how would you articulate in the short answer your view of the role of the court under the constitution? >> well, i think the important thing to understand is that there are three branches of
government, two of them are political, and if you don't like what the congress is doing, the congressman, throw them out of office. if you don't like what the president is doing, throw him out of office. if you don't like what i'm doing, it's just too bad. [laughter] now, most people would say how can that be? you do -- the cases are important. you need to understand that it's because the framers did not want the courts to be making political decisions. quite the contrary. they wanted them to be able to make decisions that people would not agree with. that's why they have -- we have life tenure and why our compensation can't be diminished. they recognize that they were establishing certain rights, and they recognize they would be unpopular from time to time. you know, flag burning, i mean, that's a horrible thing. it's a horrible thing that people burn the flag. i also understand that they have
the first amendment right to do so. now, would the supreme court have held there's a first amendment right to burn the flag if the justices had to stand for election the next fall? i mean, you hope they would have because that's what the first amendment provides, but i certainly think it would be a tougher question. you need to understand that the framers had an entirely different view in mind of what the supreme court would do than what the other branches would do. it was set up in a way that it would be able to make decisions if people did not agree with. >> thank you. >> i'm now going to switch to some of the questions submitted by our audience. i don't know if there are anymore coming my way. this is from thomas, a student. with the institution that is more than 200 years old, how do you think the court addresses
the challenges of interpreting law in the ever changing science and technology? >> it's a good question, and it's one that comes up all the time, and i think the important thing to recognize is,y know, people, when the airplane came along, okay? the framers had nod idea there would be air travel like that. probably except for jefferson, but he was -- [laughter] he was not around when they were writing the constitution so does that mean the commerce clause doesn't apply to travel? of course not. the principles the framers meant to establish in the commerce clause can be applied to evolving commerce. the court doesn't always get it right. for example, when wiretaps came out, you know, when the framers wrote the fourth amendment on searches and they didn't imagine wiretaps. it was clear quickly that
allowing people to interpret private conversations constituted the same sort of search of material that the framers wanted to protect. you try to find, at least i do, different judges approach these things differently, but what the principle underlying the protection is and apply that to new issues and new technology. i will say, whoever asked the question, that is going to be the real challenge for the next, i don't know, 50 years, how we do, adopt old rules to new technology, both in the commercial area, and what is anti-trust law, how does that come into play talking about computer technology with a lot of gate way players involved. what does the fourth amendment mean with technology, literally see through walls with the imaging. is that a search?
even though you have not broken the close that would have been the issue in medieval england. that's difficult for us, frankly, because we're not all technologically experts. it puts the heavy burden on the lawyers to explain the technology to us. >> okay. this question is asked on behalf of the students in the attendance, high school and college, which i'm going to par phrase a little bit which is, you know, after that appointment at managing editor which led to the rise -- [laughter] what were the elements in your career for you to end up as chief justice of the united states? how did that -- not everybody gets to be chief justice of the united states. at best, one person in a generation. how exactly did that happen? >> it's probably the same element that led to you becoming president of rice.
it's no false modesty. luck is the single biggest element in being chief justice, and not just for me, but for every chief justice. the great chief justice, john marshall had luck. john adams wanted to appoint john jay, the first chief justice, but was governor of new york. the time of jefferson's aascension, he needed a justice, and jay says, are you kidding? the supreme court will not amount to anything. i was well out of it. [laughter] john adams, secretary of state brings the letter into him, adams looks at the letter, crest fallen, looks at the secretary of state, john marshall, and says, i guess i have to nominate you. [laughter] now i'm not saying he wouldn't have been nominated if somebody else brought in the letter, but it certainly is it possibility.
[laughter] the list goes on and on. morrisson, the most obscure chief justice nominated by grant, the grant administration. corruption was ripe. the first five nominees that grant puts forward all seem to have been involved in some corrupt activity. grant says who was the lawyer that introduced me when i was taking the train across ohio? [laughter] they check, and that's morrisson. grant said, i liked him. let's nominate him. [laughter] he was described as being in the top tier of the third tier of lawyers in ohio. [laughter] frankly, he served well as the chief justice. it's not luck in this example, but chance. he was not originally nominated
to be chief justice, but nominated to replace justice o'connor, and very sadly, the chief justice, my predecessor and my mentor passed away in the pending of that, and they switched my nomination in the end. we all appreciate the fact that we really have just been struck by lightning, and it is the most significant -- it's better to be lucky than good. [laughter] >> that's exactly how i ended up at rice. [laughter] [applause] >> this next question actually builds a little bit on your response which is can you tell us something about your experience with, i guess, there was really justice and then chief justice. >> i was very, very fortunate to
serve as a law clerk, a year or so after law school, you serve with a justice for a year. a remarkable man, and he taught me a lot, both professionally and personally. he was a pioneer, a sense of balance between work and life that was not really that common in his generation. i remember him telling me at one point, and said, you know, if you want to spend time with your young children, you have to do it when they're young. [laughter] which is a very interesting turn of phrase. you're left puzzled, but it was a basic point telling us you can't say as soon as i finish this project, i'll spend more time with the kids. sonses i get over this hump, as soon as i do this because you'll wake up and find out they are 17 years old, and you'll miss your
chance. he did do that. he was home at a reasonable hour although he was a justice on the supreme court. he taught me a lot about work life too. one particular lesson, i remember, he said, you know, when you work on these cases, you put everything you have into them, do as good a job as you can, but then it's done. you just have to leave it behind and move on to the next one. if you start worrying about, go back and think of that case, well, was that right? did i do the right thing? you'll be paralyzed and never able to move on. just do the best you can, and move on. i like to think he taught me a lot about writing as well. if you go back, the lawyers here, you know, read through the supreme court, you can always pick out an opinion whether you see who wrote it or not, it's clear, wries p, direct. i think that is important. he thought opinions ought to be able to be understood by an intelligent layperson.
that's not always true for the work product. that's too bad. we all have to do a good job. he set a good model in that respect. >> what is your favorite passage of the constitution? why? >> the opening phrase to be honest with you, "we the people," something people struggled with. i mean, who was setting up this constitution? it was something of a surprise. you would expect at the time for it to be something like the united states, the states and congress assembled, the 13 states, you know, it's we, the people, which is a critically important to what followed which was that this was going to be a new government formed directly by the people, not a confederation of the state, each with its own agenda and
perspective. that is a tone for the whole enterprise that followed, and it was something that john marshall focused on. it was through his decision that the country really became the united states opposed to what conglomeration of different states. it started off well. >> do you think is the biggest misperception the general public has about the court today? >> i think it's a real problem. we touched upon some of these things. people think we're just part of the government like everybody else. we have pretty low approval ratings. often it goes up and down depending whether you think the latest big decision was right, but i think it's -- but we're better than congress or the executive. [laughter] i think we're low -- i didn't
mean that as -- i think we are low because people's view of government is low, and i think people need to understand, and they don't, that we're different, doing something different than the other branches are doing. they are at each other's throats, don't assume that's the way we are because we are not. >> this might be a nice counterpart to the come, not the last question, but the one before that. who was your favorite founding father and why? >> well, i think most judges, maybe not, james madison 1 the person who authored the constitution. he did a good job. i had the good president of rice chon a couple years ago to reopen the home in montpelier, virginia, and it was fascinating. they reconstructed his library to the extent they could, and
the people taking me around, this is his -- there's a great deal of jealousy among the founders. this is madison's library, didn't have as many books as jefferson, but he read them. [laughter] i said, and jefferson was not there at the time of the constitution. he was doing other work. he did the declaration of independence, but it's very interesting, and, particularly, again, i'm sure in this is the perspective, he and john marshall were cousins, and it's a strong word, but they hated each other for a lot of reasons going back in the midst of the history of the family, but also because it was an important distinction. a lot of the founding fathers were war heros, first and foremost.
alexander hamilton, john marshall, but you don't think of how they became where they were. marshall was with washington in valley forge. he behaved heroically in a number of engagements. he was there to the fact that jefferson did not participate in that enterprise. i'm on a detour, but madison because he wrote the constitution would be my favorite. >> what has pleasantly surprised you the most since joining the supreme court? >> if i could take two things, first, how serious the institution is in the conference room. in the conference room with the supreme court, which is right off of my office behind the courtroom, there's one big table. we have on one side, all the published opinions of the supreme court. on the other side, all of the statutes that congress has passed. no one is allowed in there
during the institutions other than the justices, and so although i have been litigating before the supreme court for 20 years, i had no idea what went op there. you can imagine how i felt going in there for the first time. i was -- they had been together for 11 years, no new justices. i was the youngest in the room. certainly the least of jew decision experience, on the court for two years, and i was coming in as the chief justice. i just had a vagued idea what i was supposed to do in leading the discussion, but right away, i was impressed at the level in which people were talking about the issues, talking about the cases. there was disagreement about what a case said. you get up, hold the book, and you look at it. it's not speeches. it's not any type of bullying. it's a very serious discussion
about serious issues as to which people have strong views. as someone said, there's never been a voice raised in anger in that room. that is true to this day, and that's one thing that i wouldn't say it surprised me, but something that impressed me that i didn't know about. the other is the collegiality among the justices. if you read our opinions, you think we're at each other's throats all the time. we are extremely close. if you think about it, there's -- you know why. it's a unique arrangement. i don't know of any other place in life where a group of people do the same thing. you may all work in a particular corporation or organization, but people do different things. we all do the same things. we have to decide the same cases, go to the same argument
creating a bond. you are together for a long time. i hope president obama appoints another to the court, and work together for another 25 years. i said that once to justice kagan, and she said, only 25? [laughter] she's younger than i am. you learn to get along and know you work on a common enterprise. the level of the institution, the extent to which the justices have a collegial relationship with each other. >> two things to follow-up with a flip question. anything that unpleasantly surprised you since joining the court? >> yes. i'll limit that to one though. [laughter]
"unpleasant" is the wrong word. i have a fair amount of responsibilities. the court is the highest in the land. it is a small government of the agency, people fall on the front steps, and you need the right computers of the court. we completed a renovation of the court involving a lot of administrative concerns. if you visit washington and visit the court, you wonder why the front is obscured by the scrim. it's like a sheet, and, well, the chunks of marble fell off of it. it's a huge enterprise to restore that. well, you get involved in what the cost is, where the money's coming from, relations with the architect of the capital, and all things like that.
i also have responsibilities for the court systems as a whole. $7 billion enterprise. rules issues, whether reasons are valid, among the reasons i was nominated and senate confirmed me was not because i would be a good add min straiter, but the unpleasant reality is that comes from the job. i don't really like it, i'm not good at it, i hope to get better as i go on, but that would be the most unpleasant. >> your title is actually not chief justice of the supreme court, but chief justice of the united states. that administrative responsibility in some ways extends much more broadly than to the justices in washington and to the building itself. that that larger capacity, i mean, one -- does that also put burdens on you, and do you have
concerns about the state of the judiciary in the states of the united states? >> well, i'm assisting in the responsibilities nationwide. it consists of the chief circuit judges from around the country and district judge from the circuit. we meet several times a year. they operate through committees addressing a wide range of administrative issues, and they help me enormously. i do think there's serious issues with the federal courts around the country. it's too expensive. it's too expensive for everybody. i mean, a medium sized corporation has to think twice before taking a case to court because the expenses, involved, in some cases because of the delay. in many instances, it's better to add the cost on to the price of the final product and internalize those costs. that's unfortunate.
a lot of disputes are not taken to the federal court, but should be because it's too expensive. we have serious problems with delays. you have judges here that are carrying workloads ten times more than the national average and more in some cases. they need relief. we have a great deal of difficulty getting the judicial resources we need, and in particular, places so there are serious problems that i think do need to be addressed. >> it gets back to the area i was talking about before about technology. one reason it's expensive is discovery. you have a simple issue. you file a request. please give me all of your e-mails relating to this project. well, that's hundreds of thousands of dollars, millions of dollars because of new technology. those rules saying you could just ask for all the documents were written at a time when people didn't think what this would be like. people going through files, and here they are.
we have to address those issues or the court's are not going to function the way they should. >> and your prior answer about the pleasant surprises. you mentioned, you know, you had been a very successful oral advocate before the supreme court. as i mentioned before, many people argued the best oral advocate of the generation, including one of your colleagues, so i won't mention my name. now that you've been on the other side of the bench for awhile, is there any advice you have for your former self-or other people in the position of arguing before the court you had not realized at the time? >> well, first of all, i did not become the best supreme court in appellate advocate until i became chief justice. [laughter] i became a lot better -- my jokes got funnier when i was a chief justice -- [laughter] you know, so take that with a
grain of salt. but i'm sure i couldn't be a better one if i went back to being one now. you do get a different perspective. i would, i think, tend to view the justices less as adversaries when they ask questions, and really more almost as friends because we are not asking questions because we want to trip up a lawyer. we're asking questions because we need to develop a train of thought or give a lawyer a chance to explain a case as to why it's not the way we should look at it, or get an answer from him to explain to my colleague here or there why i think his position is right, and i'd also learn to be, i think, easy to say now, but more relaxed during the presentation. athletes tell you this. i mean, i know about your baseball team. i bet if you talked to one of
the players on the team about hitting, they would tell you, you know, there's 85 things you have to think about. what your stance is, the grip, whether you're elbow should lead or shoulder leads when you turn, but then when you actually get in the position, the worst thing you can do is think about those things; right? just get up there and hit the ball. the same in a lot of other sports. ..
>> not always, but often. it is not the amount of money involved. it is difficult to explain this. schoolchildren, they come out and i talk to them. in fact, in an odd way, it is important that we understand how this affects us. constitution and acts of congress ensuring uniformity. >> i know that political and the
support is not there. i think we have talked about the support not being political. even in other aspects, there is a transparent and public institution. and the political stance is why you are not as important in terms of the function of the court? >> well, i would disagree. i think it's the most transparent of the branches. the only thing that we do that has any effect or impact is laid out in an opinion. the other branches don't have to explain to you why they are doing what they're doing. of course, they allow for speeches and this and not. but they don't have to explain why they do it. you have elected them.
he put the responsibility in their hands. they can tell you why they did it all why they did not. precisely because we are not political. none of you elected me to do anything. i am there to interpret the law with my colleagues. so i need to explain to you this is what it is. i am interpreting the law and here it is. because that ensures that i am not engaged in political activity, but engaged in their things. they still have to explain what they have done. that is a very valuable chat on the process. we are very transparent. i think that we are also accountable. >> what do you see as the
greatest challenge to the u.s. constitution in today's society? >> well, i did touch on an earlier. in terms of applying the constitution, i do think it is the technology. i mean, all of the dna is obvious for examples. you can be exonerated through dna evidence. far more often, it is used in the catch. is it a search and seizure with a tweezer full of skin and see if it matches something else. it is very difficult and there are difficult questions about that sort. we had a case with gps, you
know, you could slap a gps on it and they have complete itinerary. it turned out that the guy was going in a direction typical of search and seizure. the new technology is a amazing. the technology is just amazing. it will be a good test to see how the framework they set up in the constitution can, as it has for more than 200 years, how it can be used in dealing with these new challenges. >> do you have a judicial philosophy that you apply? in interpreting these changes that could not have possibly been anticipated?
>> i don't want the answer to be flippant, but the answer is no. i said this at my confirmation hearings. i may not have an overarching judicial philosophy. maybe at the end of my time on the court, someone will look back and say that this was his philosophy. but i have certain ideas about how we should approach a particular problem. obviously, it begins with the text of the constitution. they had a reason for objecting to searches and seizures, and you can look at that and that has part of the interpretation of the fourth amendment. i approached each case as part of the president and other sources as i can.
but i do think that that will be the big change. how the constitution is applied. it might just be my own age with the technology. a lot of technical developments that must seem very challenging to members of the corps 100 years ago. whether it is radio award, you know, whatever, the automobile. the way in which it has been applied for notions and liability with respect to things like that so maybe it is just the fact that the technology is outpacing me rather than the constitution. the least for me, that will be a challenging area. >> you know, i've had my
children help me program the parental controls with the television. [laughter] >> they assured me that it was all set up. [laughter] we will squeeze in one last question and have a brief answer. how would you like, for one of our audience members come after your time on the floor, how would you like the story of this leadership of the court and what it represented? >> well, i don't think it's necessarily terrible to think about that but i would like to think that i was a good judge. nothing more or less than that. and i think that is a lot. and if at the end of the time, people can say that i was a good
judge, i feel it will be a life well spent. >> well, mr. chief justice, it has been an extraordinary afternoon and i appreciate your our expertise and effort. if you would like to come back as an umpire, you are more than welcome. i just want to thank you for an extraordinary afternoon and a great conclusion and we are truly honored by your presence. please join me in thanking the chief justice of the united states. [applause] >> supreme court has resigned to the christian colleges
affordable health care act challenge. they wanted to claim to be considered that the president's health care law violates the school's religious freedoms. when the court ruled that the health care mandate was constitutional, they dismissed the liberty appeal. >> in a few moments, we will have part of our coverage of the recent halifax international security form, including a look at military power and the situation in syria. in a little more than two hours, sent a leader harry reid on the filibuster. after that, we will re-air the comments of chief justice roberts at rice university. >> on tomorrow morning's "washington journal", gas prices and alternative energy efforts.
long-term unemployment benefits and why they may end in january without congressional action is discussed. after that, dominic chu describes what wall street investors are doing with their money in excess of the fiscal cliff. close plus your e-mails and phone calls and tweets. "washington journal" is live at 7:00 a.m. eastern on c-span. >> you are watching c-span2 with politics and public affairs. weekdays featuring live coverage of the u.s. senate. on weeknights, watch key public policy events, and every weekend, the latest nonfiction authors and books on booktv. you can see past programs and get our schedules on the website and join in the the conversation on social media sites. >> representatives met in nova scotia earlier this month before the house.
this is one hour and 15 minutes. >> welcome back, everybody. i would like to hand over to the dominical steve clemons, who is moderating the session. >> thank you so much. it's great to be with all of you. we have a fantastic panel. we have kazuyuki yamazaki, part of japan's ministry of foreign affairs and we have the undersecretary of defense for policy, jim miller, and then we have the editorial director of india today, and a very big star blasters program, i enjoyed our encounter last year and expects similar feistiness, m.j. akbar. finally, we have paul madison,
who is commander of the navy. thank you for joining us. when i was thinking about the title today and thinking about our panel, it occurred to me and i went online to find a chinese event is being held right now. there are no canadians, japanese, americans, on this panel. we don't have any chinese today, but we should have a lot of fun discussing strategy in asia pacific region with china, but i also want to acknowledge that that voice may not be with us today, but that could be giving us room to run. i went to china and visited with the ministry of foreign affairs and i met with their director and the finally said i cannot understand what the grand strategy is. this was about 2004. and i said, what is your grand strategy? and it was how to keep you guys
distracted. [laughter] that seems to be shifting. one of the very interesting things, i know this is not a u.s. panel, but just two days ago, our national security advisor gave a very interesting speech at the center for strategic international studies at really laid out the reasons and rationale for resetting and rebalancing american assets in the world. i would like to open with jim because he gave a talk about why the asia pacific is important and why he took the china section of that. there are a lot of things going on in the world. israel and palestine is going up again. you have a lot of things happening. so does this make sense?
>> if we had not been in iraq and afghanistan in the last 10 years, his art has a great presence in the pacific. as we look at the importance of the region, as we look at economic growth and we expect to see 50% of economic growth in the coming decade, as we look at the tremendous opportunities that we have, in the context of the china that is rising and economic power, it is clear that make sense rebalance to asia-pacific, even as we continue to engage globally. >> one of the things that is
really interesting is that when america was shifting to asia, many of them here said you were going to neglect it. well, at that point, i don't think it was a fair comparison. because i didn't feel that american american resources were stretched to such a point that there is such a zero-sum game between one part of the world on the other. this is not being presented we had an idea about how women can have it all. the answer is no, that there are limits. >> we have continued deep engagements with other regions
and other countries. we talked about nato is having to being a provider of security, and we see that over the last couple of decades. we will continue to be engaged in the middle east and north africa and also globally. the united states is a global power. particularly when you look at alliances and partnerships. our intention in objective is to continue to strengthen the annoyances and ownerships and if i can get into the topic of china, to build on the areas of cooperation that we have across the board, including this area, because we know there will be competition to the military domains work and shape that company in a way that avoids conflict and the possibility of misperception and misunderstanding and is actually based on that.
>> you just came back from spending a couple of years in china. he said that they were fun but personally kind of tough. japan and china are having a square off. hillary clinton just received a report that involves richard armitage, joe knives, and another one that i can't think of yet. those who said this could slip into a war and a big conflict. we need to be prepared. the united states is obligated, but to consult with japan. so you have had a tough time. so i would like to get your sense of what you think the game plan is old regionally and internationally. japan has been there right next to china for a long time and you have been helping each other. what is your quick snapshot?
what is china's direction? >> viewpoint, of china and india, we have diplomatic issues. in 1971, the united nations in 1969. they were in the area and we have been re-integrating everything. for the first 75 years, we have never received the people's republic of china and the u.n. report -- they changed this
viewpoint of china. china has openly expressed their views on this in maritime security. and those are part of the reality. so this is a kind of comprehensive strategy to advance. >> that is an important point. what you're basically saying is that this is about power and the power -- china is clearly becoming more powerful. you are seeing lines being challenged. i remember talking to george soros once after he broke the back of england -- i'm sorry, broke the bank of england. what he saw as a hedge fund manager basically drove so hard against the wind that
fundamentally the institutional power on the bank of england site had to collapse. and i have looked at asia and the test of power in the region, whether it was the vp incident in 2001, or whether china was more vociferous and robust, naval exercises in the sailor that was detained by japan. do you think this is essentially china's rise to test the solvency and strength of u.s. japan relations? >> japan is a rich nation, but it is a shrinking nation. when you look at it, one wonders what is the command strategy in the region with an alliance and how do you keep yourself robust when china may be saying, when you look at bloglines, japan
will become less significant overtime and we are going to become more significant over time. >> adenoma salmon, when the report was released, there was a very young analyst that many of us read in china is that america is undergoing it. of the teacher contraction.thiso push these boundaries out. will you take in terms of how you look at it in japan? is this something where china is trying to force a break? >> for the past four years, starting in 2008, [inaudible]
my understanding is that china is more aggressive. so i think as you mentioned, it is is part of the alliance and is very important. this has become a public asset. this is a strong factor for the region. so we continue to cherish the alliance and a canny talk to us about -- what are the stakes in this question about asia pacific security? i know that china is a specific country, but you could be a bit removed if you want. i would suppose. but i'm interested in what they
see as part of equities in managing and handling china's rise. >> the first thing i like would like to say this is my third form. [inaudible] [applause] >> thank you. obviously, what is happening in asia, china is canada's largest partner. the prime minister has visited a couple times in the last couple of years. they have visited beijing and recently we have had military delegations here.
china is emerging in a new way. and it is beginning to shift its internal focus to a much more maritime flavored one. it them -- it helps make it better as opposed to pushing him to a point of instability to which it can be very adverse the flow of trade. china is very much interested in channeling energy and resources and we are very much interested in building trust -- or teacher
trust and cooperation with china. and from a naval perspective, of course, i will give you one sort of anecdote. two months ago i attended the west mayville pacific symposiumd the opportunity to sit between the people's liberation army and navy and the commander of the japanese maritime self-defense force. it was at a time when the dispute was leaving on cnn and bbc. it was an opportunity there for them to put this thing to bed.
>> how tobacco? >> not too well. [laughter] never was the bridge built or even considered. and i think one of the key issues here with respect to china as they emerge as the leading nation is the ability to build bridges and communicate and enable every form and how there is multilateral relationships and advantages keep the volume as well as possible. >> blaster i had the privilege of talking to henry kissinger about his book on china.
so i opened it up, and i talked about an agreement with henry. and i said, i'm going to ask you if you are still yourself. kissinger said, i would never write such a thing. >> i said it's in the book. >> now, there is a great article in he basically wrote about the two chinas, the two agents. there is a doctor jekyll and mr. hyde that is evolving. the doctor jekyll is the nicer of the two, the other is the strategic asia. if you look at the economic asia, there is a heavy amount of
economic independence. if you look at the security, border disputes, historical grievances, we have seen real impact on this. india has its own problems in the region. the own border disputes. when you look at this is something basically that can be handled. >> i meant free ride and not preload, by the way. >> okay, so how the chinese were described with any relationship between japan and america. >> the interesting aspect of all of these complex is that in
order to be neighbors, you have to love or hate each other. we have done another. in 1962, there were a lot of strategic conflicts. you have to understand why we are not neighbors. especially in terms of accessibility. what does it resonate with? the positions have been taken by postcolonial nations. we had to abandon our national
positions. another we are strong, we need to resume. as you know, this is part of the national position. what was there in the title of today's discussion, i have a country and i'm proud to say it that we have reached high levels of confusion. but it is very interesting that the debate of confusion is actually that india and china are running together. in our country, the debate on confusion was started by winston churchill. it will be part of chaos. not because they couldn't understand english, but because
he had just decided were four years -- [inaudible] he had presided over 50 years over an annual growth in india of 1%. so indians need to understand what this was all about. in the confusion of independence and it was important because 1947 was the modern 1976. america is the youngest country in the modern world, but they are not, they are the oldest countries in the modern world. deontological template estimates
the structure. india is important because india is a hallucination of the postcolonial world. in the indian constitution creates a template for the democracy and so forth. china has a different template. very interestingly, we have received two parties they actually became the dominant force. one advocate had to be economically driven loose.
they are autocratic left, the chinese. they both had charismatic leaders. >> making a long story short, discussing it as americans. [laughter] they are both charismatic leaders. the economic policies they had been following were important. in one case, you had softer form. and in china's case, you had hard reform. in both, the corruption has included so much turbulence. a handful of people, politicians
and bureaucrats, they were creating billionaires, literally. it really is a matter of resources. the conventional industries are not incurring this. this tremendous battle that has taken over as the most dangerous thing that both countries are facing and we are talking about the anger of the people. >> as i look at china, i wrote a piece about an increasing swagger. did you also see an insecurity
complex inside china about concern and if i were really to put the complaint on this desk can i get president obama to be more clear and forceful, that they wanted to see structure, i don't want to get into the death of confucianism, the king is the king, the minister is the minister, the father is the father, and the sun is the son of government. so you have everyone in his comment i should say in her place so it doesn't leave that much fun for that element. so is china looks at it, it is the sense of harmony. dozens of harmony and how you achieve it. very rich country, that they won't respect, but they want to see them step back with greater
latitude but they don't see -- this is why i personally think we are on a collision course. when you look at what china's expectations of the world are, you also look at it as paranoia and mercantilism. jim, i would love to hear you talk about this. about what is going on in the cyberworld. despite our best efforts and i want to replay history, usually and often leads to conflict. so i would love to get some conversation from those of you who are thinking seriously that this is a no-nonsense forum. i think it is easy to predict conflict and i would love to hear why that's not what happened, given the work of all of the governance. >> i just wanted to ask a question here. which is one of the important
worried about china, trying to put together china and india, because that was his strategy, i know you can talk one way or another about prime ministers, but this notion about does japan really need to invest in structures? are you worried now given your experience? you have to balance it much more vigorously than in the past? >> with there is an assumption that china is part of the international stakeholder. and they respect the
that these disputes will not be part of this bye-bye diplomacy. it also talks about probably economically the ideal level playing field. it also includes cyberspace. the principles are critical. >> it is a very significant issue. it is represented by the partnerships. and as we look at the united states, both of our existing alliances and new partnerships, not really new, but help reinvigorate the partnerships. as we look at opportunity to build on cooperation and
opportunities to compete economically and avoid any conflict. so those are the critical element. including both regional and more broad international institutions. >> the other two things i'm going to put in our we have six years of history where the united states has provided a rule towards economic development and the fact that most of the international trade floats on seawater. and we have not just the asia pacific version. we continue to sustain and enhance our presence. finally, we have the u.s. military power production as well. that is a global capability.
but that means other powers, we want the ability in the middle east. and as you look at these different areas, there are terrific opportunities. and to fundamentally try to answer the question that secretary quinten and others have been engaged in for some time. that is until we get a better answer until we have in the past. to how i knew rising power comes in with the international system. can we do so without significant risks falling into conflict? >> yes, i would like to say i agree with everything that the secretary said. in fact, the admiral, } those points. we were talking about engagement
and the strategic trust. part of the asia specific targets, to really indicate the strategic effect. i think that you talk to us on a very important briefing, which is the superiority complex, if i could put it that way. china has said that they were abused by major powers for the 19th century and well into the 20th century. they seem to have a bit of a superiority complex about the solutions they are building and how china is emerging as a global power. the discontented piece is a bit of a challenge.
and this helps china sea the entire challenge there. the chinese are making claims with respect to the united nations are fairly outrageous. what they are looking for, i think, at the end of the day, is respect. respect at the table and for who they are and what they are doing. somehow we need to find a means to bring these two solitudes together because at the end of the day, any conflict, whether it is kinetic or otherwise, it will have a fundamental impact. >> that is what is interesting. you have two of the biggest economies in the world in a
nightmarish situation that raises the fundamental question. that draws people closer together. part of the title today is mischief and miscalculation. what was really interesting if you could have 17 different spheres of contact with the soviet end of two of them well, you could still have 15 others. there is a lot of heavy investment and how to talk about things like that and in this era, when i look at the amount of time, particularly in the obama administration, if you look at senior officials go to asia throughout the region and they have meetings or others and also the discussion that tends to coordinate with china, there seems to be a lot of efforts try to coordinate.
looking out the value of the in the dispute and said that they were shocked and surprised by the level of miscommunication and assessment and the dangers of that between china and japan. so raises the question of whether or not -- i agree with you. i know china wants respect. but whether or not what you are seeing is a strategic or taxable gain by china to use this potential mr. stutzman to look like the unstable part in some of this to help push up the own interest. and that worries me a little bit. >> it is not of domination will respect. it is about whether it will be static or where the agreement will be dynamic. and there is no way that nations are going to agree on what will
be the interest. it becomes explosive. >> the issue really is china, india, competing perspectives. i have seen india and china when we went to china in 2004, maybe 2003 today, we are going to talk about hundred 50 billion as the next horizon. this is about drawing the issues. so i think what asia is looking for, is that we can have correlations with each other. without being dictated to.
it can be dangerous, but this is the way it is. a dominant element of strategy will not work. a background element is important. it never happened before. it doesn't mean that they aren't going to be martyred as part of the others. but we are taking positions and we are recognizing that nations change and people change and we have to keep abreast of changing
ambitions, if we like. >> i would like to pose one last thing. >> i look today to see how much china held 1.5 trillion. they are going with this. we often talk about national security issues in terms of power in a classical sense. but there is just no doubt economies matter. whether it has been leon panetta or bob gates or admiral mullen, the constant focus is on this. it does raise the question. someone made the comment that america's sources of power today, it is the size of the pentagon and those devil is actually had a bigger problem
than us. but i would be interested in when you're thinking about policy, do you look at that the source of leverage, or did this restrain american options in terms of what you can do? >> with respect to the deficit and debt of the national security liability, we need our senior leadership and the ability to take it on. we have an opportunity to do so, we have a requirement to do so. the requirement and foundation of national power is ultimately economic in terms of global influence. and in terms of supporting the military. we have, i think, members of the
house will step up in the coming months. >> how did you look at your surplus of the united states? do they say that we have america under control because of the treasury? >> superposition to the united states is very important. it is very decisive. so there is no intention for us with this economic relationship. >> i'm going to open it up to the floor. we have four microphones around the room. josh grogan is over here.
>> thank you very much, and thank you for your time today. i figure we can all agree that the number one issue of the risk of conflict with china is a large part of u.s. strategy encouraging this is to urge china to have a better code of conduct and et etc. and the chinese respond typically as that's fine, but there's no reason to use those because that can be a heavy dispute. of course, the push for china to move toward that is undermined because the software will follow that logic they think was there since the 14th century or whatever. my question is will the japanese
cement to the revolution mechanisms regarding with a plan, and will the u.s. urge the allies would be the chinese use these mechanisms. it is very clear and simple that there is no -- from our viewpoint, there is no element to be redistributed. >> they basically said that during this period, a recognition that was used, but there was a recognition of control and it's an interesting piece that raised questions.
this gentleman right here, just. >> hello, i am henry ross from canada. talking about research capacity, i believe the numbers show that about 50 million chinese men and women are involved in the enterprise of scientific research. like everything else, it has a jekyll and hyde personality. leaving aside personality for a moment, there are some positive aspects that one could argue that large segment of the chinese population is probably one of the most globally connected and open parts.
seeing china's place in the world in this important aspect of economic development and political development, how do you see this playing out? i know that both india and japan have engaged in research cooperation. this is a missed opportunity? >> in response, let me just say that science technology, engineering and math, the united states obviously has national security. ..
>> they are fighting over a potential energy reserve that nobody knows what is in there. they could fight over something very little. they may be fighting over something very vast. the nature of offshore mother time reserve until you go in and explore and understand what you're actually fighting over, you will be positioning yourself, billing big navies, for the day you will know what is actually happening down there, and at that point, japan will be, if it pursues its current energy proposal of getting off nuclear power, will be heavily dependent on natural gas. china, which is now running out of coal, will be heavily dependent on natural gas, and at
that point, we're going to get this very, very inflaming situation. i think that what needs to be done is to go in now, figuring out what is is the exend of the reserve, what are we feuding over, and deal with the dispute in the context of the energy inner agency which china is not a member of and should be or an independent one, but unless we understand it's an energy issue, we will not be able to get to the root of it. >> thanks for your comment. i'll gather others, and hand your microphone to jack. just an important point. there's a distinction between what was said that this could be a fight over an earnest issue, an asset, versus a fight over strategic lines and perception of power. that's an important distinction. jack, and the gentleman in the far back, and we'll look to
lisa. yes, go ahead. >> jack, washington. i just want to pick -- >> brevity will get gold stars. >> sorry? >> brevity gets gold stars. >> china's oil economy is half imported order from the middle east and north africa, evacuated 30,000 chinese from libya in that period of time of unrest. the question i raise is the need for china to stabilize sources of oil and energy reserves from that part of the world to lead to the same kind of ambition to sustain that with a geopolitical force in the form of a blue water navy as we have over the last 60-70 years. does that lead to the conflict we're talking about here? >> yes, sir? >> bill gram, canada. maybe a quick comment on the resource issue. i take issue with whether or not it's better to know what's there or not there. canada and the united states
have an interesting discussion about the border between alaska and northern canada -- >> ambiguity. >> better off when it was terrorists knowing us, and not when you knew how many barrel of oil contributed to each nation's economy. that's an aside. i want to ask mj a question as to moving from the flash point of the moment, the longer term issue of the indian ocean and seeing china bases in sri lanka. baluchistan, is this an issue with the sea leans, commerce with africa, or does it see it as an encirclement of india, and, therefore, a strategic threat to india rather than a legitimate protection to the sea lanes? >> thank you. let me go to lisa here. >> lisa from washington.
with all of the talk about hyde, i was surprised none of you mentioned the question of how china treats its own people in human rights. i wonder, you know, earlier this year when the human rights lawyer escaped to the u.s. embassy, it was awkward for secretary clinton at the time, but it ultimately led her to say that human rights is at the heart of the diplomacy with china i want to hear how each of you views the question of labor rights, human rights, environmental justice, in terms of the long term relationship between democracies in china. >> a lot of questions. give them to the panel and work from this gentleman to the other half. quickly. >> my question is really for
mr. miller. he -- america's strategy comes down to borrowing from china to save the world from china. this is not a sustainable strategy. america needs its economic house in order. there's issues that are relevant here. the widest measure of trade, runs about 4% or 5% of the gdp now, and manufacturing's 11% of gdp. services hardly produce any exports so how do you square the circle? >> great, thank you. >> a lot of questions on the table from energy and ambiguity, and indian ocean basis, china, human rights, and the question on borrowing from china. i'm going to start with you, paul. >> okay.
>> it's a real strategic dilemma for nations engaged, primarily economically with china because there's always a human rights imperative, and it's either the eel vaunt in the room or the challenge to get into the agreement space you want to be in, but that be said, there are four or five hundred million chinese living in the same per capita income as nigeria on two dollars a day, and that's a concern for the chinese in the one party estate where security forces are party entities so a real challenge. >> i'd like to touch on also the question about -- questions about the islands. i think the island disputes are really a tactical demonstration
of something more strategically important which is whether the rule of law at sea, the units nations on the law of the sea is one of the most important international agreements, perhaps thee most important agreement of the 20th century because it resolved the conflict between state control, resources at sea, and the need for the freedom of the sea to enable globalized trade. so whenever there's pressure put on by the system, that pressure needs to be challengedded because if it is not, there's other nations who will push the limits of up close in a way that could be destabilizing in the 21st century.
it's very important, i think, to look at the south china sea, the line to ask what is china's real ambition here. when they talk about the naval strategy, the seas, the rapid expansion of the navy, they use the term "active defense" so they are taking that view and then applying it at sea to protect themselves, but also to, i think, secure the communication for that energy flow, and as long as it's done in the constructive way that enables global garch nans to be improved, that is good. the contrary is not. >> thank you. >> start with the question on china's term of the indian
ocean, and india certainly doesn't take very kindly to the construction of water, the bliewk stan part, a massive infrastructure, development, it's not simply support, but a new entity, a base, much more than that. i think it destroy intention to not just -- but water is at the heart, not only of the world's most dangerous war zone, but the world's most dangerous civil war zone, and that is why we discuss many things. we underestimate the potential of the hack vok in afghanistan upon infrastructures developed in china. now, it's certainly concerning about south of the muslim regions thab it usedded to be five years ago. attacked on the chinese settlements on that region. there have been attacks where
pakistani forces have not been able to contain, and they forget about it, forget about an investigation. what we are seeing is not simply the construction of the facilities, but we are seeing the construction of fortresses that are not within the control of those who have built them with consequences that, you know, we'll all see too much. i wonder also why we are discussing iran talk ever everyone's concern and visibility. whether we are forgetting that pakistan, you know, it may be more dangerous potentially than it ends, that, in fact, we're getting a nuclear powers. israel, iran, potentially pakistan, india, certainly china, but definitely japan, potentially -- occasionally, and
then russia. [laughter] and 70% of the world's energy is here. energy becomes so dray dramaticy contagious. what do you do? briefly over human rights. i do believe between democracy and dictatorship is this, a soft asset, but a very important one that why india does not record in human rights that, you know, necessarily be proud of, but they have accountability, and, therefore, i believe that whereas china could be a successful nation, it cannot be a modern nation, and it's only a modern nation if it permits democracy and if it permits secularism, the equality and presence of it. until then, it's successful, but not modern. >> james? >> three things very quickly. first, i want to just follow directly on the admiral's comments about the u.n.
convention on the law of the sea. it is remarkable to many of the u.s. military that united states is not ratified the convention. we had a pretty sincere effort to bring it forward to the senate. we were a couple of votes short. i think senator my -- mikulski for the support. i think we can take that up again and get it done as a country. it is challenging to make the case that we are making which is that these potential conflicts over territory from the reed bank and so on should be resolved on the basis of principles when the fundsmental convention that governs us is not one that we have ratified. >> i don't want to burn much time here, but pushing back on a point because i see you raising a profile, i respect when
barbara has done, but george w. bush supported the treaty, lugar supported that treaty. you're back in power, got the president, why not push it? steve, i wish we had time. for all the angst about law of the seas, both parties let it sit despite it being violence. as a journalist, i want to remind people there's an institution that neglects on both sides which i credit the senator for moving, but it's interesting how people b didn't see this before in earlier periods. >> steve, i think that's fair. the reality is in the last session, we were literally one vote short from being able to move it forward. i should say, the senate was. it was something the department of defense supported. i would put that, despite its importance, i put that behind us, taking steps to get our economic house in order. it's fundamental to our long term security. it's fundamental to our global leadership role. it is the foundation of our long
term power and influence as a nation. with respect to human rights, one of the principles falling directly on your comments, one of the principles we have to understand and to follow is that human rights do matter. >> i won't take up two issues very promptly. first thing is the energy. east china sea, when made a visit, we made an agreement to exploit jointly the oil wells in southeast china sea, and we wanted to start the consolidation basedded on the agreement, but the china kept refusing to hold the meetings so even though there's agreement between the two areas of the
countries, no development. we are very much disappointed with the current situation. an issue, claiming it's their island. define dimension from the energy issue. human rights. we also highly regard the human rights situation as important to the human right situation in china. we have a discussion with them, but living in china for three years. the part of the human rights, the information sphere in china is totally different from canada, united states, and japan. they do not -- the people in china do not share the same information as we have here, and you can compare the two northern prizes that china took, the peace prize, and there, information disfusion, inside the countries, totally different. very little people know about
the peace prize so this is one of the examples. there's a lot -- there's broader room to the improve in china. that is all part of the mission. >> great. folks, we have to stop at 11:30 in four or five minutes. there's 30-second interventions, and i believe in getting as many voices in. right there, this gentleman. oh, well, you go ahead, but 30 seconds. >> yes, okay. i can take up -- >> no, no, this is on -- this is recorded. >> thank you very much. one of the features of this panel is miscalculation, and if we go back to the cold war era, we can see that one of the important artifacts is incidents of sea agreements between the soviets and -- >> identify yourself. >> jim, i work with the canadian navy. >> terrific, thank you. >> i'm interested in the whole question of the potential for instability at sea in east asian
waters as a result of the ewe tillization of fishing craft, proxies, or nonmilitary or paramilitary forces. what is the potential for agreement to disfuse these miscalculations? >> great question which we'll get to during coffee. right here. >> from paris. i wanted to ask the panelists what do you think of china's plan for solutions for syria? china came out recently with a four-point plan. do you take this seriously? if so, could it be part of the new normal? china looking at a crisis that the west is unable to solve, far from its shores saying we have a position to take, and we can play a role in this? >> run to the back run. right, this gentleman here. hand up high. thank you for your brevity, folks. >> thank you, richard downey. early in the discussion, you
asked about the islands, the dispute, and your response was that the china -- the chinese response was part of a long term plan. in recent years, we have seen china make tremendous efforts certainly in the western hemisphere and africa to build infrastructure to gain access to raw materials. at the same time, we've also seen them make tremendous efforts to build military to military relations, and my question for the panel is is that military dimension just an effort to protect their economic interests, or is it some part of a long term plan to help lay foundations for their assent to their position as a global power? >> one last gentleman in the -- neil diamond would call the, you know, the tree people, way back. hot august night. this gentleman, yes. run the microphone to him.
>> wait, wait, just a second. you go ahead. >> thank you. russell from the australia policy institute. none of us should be come place sent about china's rise and likely to be challenges ahead, but we have to pay closer attention to the kinds of things the chinese say about themselves and their own priorities, and, in particular, pay attention to the remarks of the soon to be new president of china, whose speech 48 hours ago had important points about the challenges that china has domestically relations with social change in relation to the economics, and in relation called, interestingly, lifestyle, which this was a speech very different in style and tone and content to recent speeches, and it deserves closer attention. >> totally agree. you get the final comment here. >> first comment is about --
>> no, one comment. >> about the article, and this is not accurate, using the document which is archived from our institute library in a very defined context. very inaccurate. >> this is nick's article? >> yes. >> nick, we'll -- that's a strong statement. nick is wrong. that's helpful. [laughter] we have just very quickly, and i want to say, you know, i asked the friends on stage what they did with -- what their hobbies were, and paul, cricket, not surprisingly, kind of, jim's is tennis, and i'm fascinated by this, not that you have to adopt national sports, but there was a time i was in a -- making the comment that india or iran will beat the united states because iran plays chess and america plays baseball. i remember in the gulf war, it was said that americans play tennis, we play golf i think it
was, and to a certain degree when you think about these kind of questions about strategy and how you are thinking, i do think that those i know that think because we have a question of where is china going, how is it thinking about the world, my sense is that chinese strategists are smart, have a plan, begin looking at assets, and i don't know the chinese name for go, but, you know, the black chips and white chips on the table, assets around the world, and how they move them, when i think about u.s. strategy, can't speak for canadians, but with the exception of jim miller, we are more reactive in my view than strategic, but i sense there's a strategic game that china's playing with so in closing, beyond responding to the final comments from those we assembled, i'd love to get just a quick snapshot of your assessment of chinese strategy in the world and whether you take it seriously or whether you think china just wants to lie
low and not push the buttons. as quickly as poll, please. >> yes, china is, of course, the china is trying to advance to the world, and secure our energy, resources, and the influence. that is their goal. there is not, in a sense, it's for any to do so. the question is whether they abide by the international rules and follows international kind of consensus. that's what matters, and that is my prospect. >> thank you, jim? >> i see a lot of strong strategic thought in china, a long term view, and as they do that, i believe the chinese have the same interests that we and the rest of the international community of managing their rise in the international system, and that will take active management. that will take the discussion that we have referred to today, and just a brief comment on the
question about china's role in international diplomacy. look at what they've done to the party talks and party role is we look at their continued role in the p5 plus 1 with respect to iran, that's an interesting conversation in the coming months. you actually, i think, you're seeing them play a more active and positive role in the international diplomacy. on syria, we have worked to do. you saw where we're headed respect to syria based on hillary clinton's comments, but china is strategic, strong interests in managing its ascension as a global power, by the way, not the only rising power in the neighborhood, and it's something that we share, and i believe that both we in
the united states and the community of democracies have the ability to act strategically and act together and based on the principles and partnerships. >> thank you, quickly. >> yes, we are a rising power, but we don't have a lot of advertising campaign. [laughter] but i just want to be prominent on china's syria plan. it has nothing to do with healing syria which is a separate issue. this china and russia have actually got together, and they had been sent to dehli to -- and india thankfully resisted keeping options nuanced and flexibility.
china's national gain, there's three chapters on the game. the interesting thing about the game is it's centric because the game is not allowed to touch them, but they can touch everyone else, and the game is very relevant to how they behave particularly with their neighbors. you have to bow and then the rest is fine. just one on our game in india that helps us all to understand us. the good thing about cricket is it's not a single game. it's many games. we want to play fast forward, we turn to t20 cricket, but the diplomatic game is the test match. it goes across five days. it's hard for any game to cross five days, but indians and brit ire are good at it. we're trying to teach the australians -- [laughter] >> final word. >> hard to follow the cricket, but what i say in closing is the
chinese strategy is focused on internal challenges as a huge emerging middle class ignited by some democratic momentum come in, but extermly they continue to look for energy as the ambassador has said, meaning they have to engage with the system of the world, and we hope that it is a positive engagement and a constructive one, and not one that brings more conflict around the globe. >> i apologize for the many of you who had questions that we could not get to. hopefully we'll continue during coffee. let us all thank the ambassador, under secretary of defense, james miller, and vice admiral paul madison. thank you so much for your insight and for participating. thank you. [applause] thank you, very much, ladies and gentlemen, and let's remember we don't get a great panel discussion without a great moderator, and steve has certainly been that. [applause] >> more now from the halifax
security forum with a panel on syria. this is a little more than an hour. [no audio] >> should a side lose control in syria or hezbollah try to obtain them. i can't, and you guys are the experts, you i can't remember a time of more moving parts in the middle east puzzle than right now on this day, so much is now,
and they are all, of course, interconnected. hamas is testing israel. israel is testing egypt. there's more uncertainty than ever about syria, its relationship with iran, whether it can hold lebanon together, what is hezbollah doing now that its backers are in their own fights inside syria. the evolving role of qatar and saudi arabia, and turkey playing a role. it's enormous. of anything at the security conference, this is probably the least secure discussion there is. i'm reminded of bob dylan's favorite song, "along the watchtower," and that should be our anthem this morning. there must be a way out of here so let's aim for some relief and less confusion, and i want to propose the following format just for the beginning of this panel, and then i think i want to open it up to a lot of questions from the floor